What Makes a Robot?

Event Description: The 21st century has brought around much social and technological advancement: the proliferation of personal computers and the internet, social media, and – more importantly – automation. Automation is becoming a larger and more significant part of our lives every day. A large proponent of this automation is the field of robotics. The discussion of robotics inevitably leads to the image of a dystopian “I, Robot”- or “Terminator”-esque future; however, there are no signs that a naked Arnold will show up tomorrow and start looking for Sarah Connor. To make sure that doesn’t happen, it is important to understand what makes a robot. Moreover, we need to understand how robots came to be, what they look like right now, and what they are going to look like in the future. This allows us to see the core principles of the field of robotics, and how their expression will change with the robots of the future. Most excitingly, it will help us see that advances in computing hardware and software have surrounded the future of robotics with incredible potential and a cloud of ambiguity.

The purpose of this talk is to provide a brief overview of robotics, without going so deep into the topic that calculus is required. It will shed some light on the key characteristics of a robot by providing a showcase of the robots of the past, present, and future.

When:  April 18, 2018 6:30PM – 9:00PM

Where: Queen Elizabeth Park Community & Cultural Centre, BLACK BOX Room

Guest Speaker: 

Nick Gowland is an Applications Engineer in the Automotive/Industrial Division at Promation: a robotics and automation company. The Automotive/Industrial Division is an automation integrator; they design and implement automated manufacturing and packaging processes for various manufacturing and distribution companies. As an Applications Engineer, Nick works alongside the sales team to disseminate customer requirements through meetings and RFQs, develops concept designs, and provides pricing for the proposed solution(s). Nick has also worked at MDA where he helped analyze the performance of the CanadArm 2 and diagnose anomalies. Prior to entering industry, Nick completed a BASc in Engineering Science at the University of Toronto, majoring in Aerospace Engineering. During his undergrad, Nick was exposed to various aspects of robotics, including mobile robotics and controls.

Event Agenda:

    Registration & Networking
    Q & A Session
    Speaker Appreciation & Closing

Admission: Free.  Refreshment will be provided.